Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Why did I receive a notice?

    If you received a Notice, you either currently obtain payment processing services through Mercury, previously received payment processing services through Mercury from October 9, 2009, through May 16, 2017, or were referred by Mercury to Global during that period.

    The Court authorized the Notice because you have a right to know about your rights under a proposed class action before the Court decides whether to approve the Settlement. If the Court approves the Settlement and after any objections and appeals are resolved, a Settlement Administrator appointed by the Court will oversee the cash payments that the Settlement allows. At the same time, if you are a Current Customer and choose the Credit Option instead of cash, you will receive the products and services you selected.

    The Notice and this website explains the lawsuit, the Settlement, your legal rights, what benefits are available, who is eligible for them, and how to get them.

    If you did not receive a Notice, you may review a copy here. You may also contact the Settlement Administrator to send you one if you think you are part of this Settlement at 1-888-733-0353 or info@mpsprocessingsettlement.com.

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  2. What is this lawsuit about?

    The case is known as Champs Sports Bar & Grill Co., et al. v. Mercury Payment Systems, LLC and Global Payments Direct, Inc., Case No. 1:16-CV-00012-MHC, and is pending in the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia. The four merchants who sued are called the “Plaintiffs,” and the companies they sued, Mercury and Global, are the “Defendants.”

    Plaintiffs contracted with or through Defendants to process payment card transactions. Plaintiffs claim that on monthly invoices sent to them for these services Defendants: (1) marked up the interchange fees due to banks and the access fees due to Visa and MasterCard rather than pass the fees through at cost, and (2) charged fees that were not authorized by the contracts. Plaintiffs sued Defendants for breach of contract, fraud, unjust enrichment, and violation of the federal and Georgia RICO statutes. The lawsuit seeks to recover the amount that merchants were overcharged and other relief. Defendants deny that that they acted improperly and assert they have no legal liability. The Court has not yet decided whether Plaintiffs’ claims have merit.

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  3. Why is this a class action?

    In a class action, one or more people or entities called “Class Representatives” sue on behalf of themselves and other people and entities with similar claims. All of these people and entities together are the “Class” or “Class Members.” One Court resolves the issues for all Class Members, except for those who exclude themselves from the Class. A class action allows the claims of all Class Members to be more efficiently resolved than individual lawsuits and provides a remedy for Class Members whose individual damages on their own are not large enough to justify a lawsuit.

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  4. Why is there a settlement?

    The Court has not decided in favor of Plaintiffs or Defendants. Instead, both sides agreed to a settlement. Settlements avoid the costs and uncertainty of a trial and related appeals, while providing benefits to members of the Settlement Class. The Class Representatives and the attorneys for the Settlement Class think the Settlement is best for all Class Members.

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  5. How Much Did Mercury Overcharge Me? Will I Continue To Be Charged For Those Same Fees?

    There has been no determination by the Court that you were overcharged. Plaintiffs claim that on monthly invoices sent to them for services, Defendants; (1) marked up the interchange fees due to banks and access fees due to Visa and MasterCard rather than pass the fees through at cost, and (2) charged fees that were not authorized by the contracts. Defendants deny that they have acted unlawfully or improperly. The Court has not determined who is right. If you have questions about charges on your current or future billing statements, please contact your account representative.

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  6. How do I know if I am part of the Settlement?

    You are a member of the Class and affected by the Settlement if:

    • You contracted with or through Mercury or were referred by Mercury to Global to receive payment processing services from October 9, 2009, through May 16, 2017; and
    • You were charged: (a) a card association access fee exceeding the amount of the published fees current as of the date of the charge, and/or an interchange rate exceeding published interchange rates current as of the date of the charge for those whose contracts provided that such fees and rates would be passed through at cost; or
    • You were charged any of the following fees: Regulatory Fee, Data Security Fee, PCI Fee, Monthly Maintenance Fee, Batch Fee, Statement Fee, Annual Fee, Association Card Accept & License Fee, or MSA Breach Only Fee.
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  7. What does the Settlement provide?

    Mercury will pay $52,000,000 into a settlement fund to pay cash benefits to Settlement Class Members; the cost of notifying the Class and administering the Settlement; and, subject to the Court’s approval, the fees and expenses of the lawyers who represent the Class and service awards to the Class Representatives.

    Class Members who contracted with or through Mercury to receive payment processing services and were contracted as of May 16, 2017, are considered “Current Customers.” If you are a Current Customer, you will automatically receive a cash payment via an electronic funds transfer unless you to decide instead to accept a credit of twice the amount of the cash payment, which will be applied to the purchase of certain products and services that Mercury offers to customers. You can learn more about the credit and the products and services towards which it can be applied here . If you decide to choose the credit rather than the cash payment, you will need to make your choice by following the instructions here. You need not accept the credit. If you do nothing, you will receive the cash payment.

    Class Members who are not Current Customers are considered “Former Customers.” Former Customers are eligible for a cash payment but must file a valid and timely Claim Form to get it. Because Former Customers are no longer doing business with Defendants, Former Customers are not eligible for the Credit Option. You may complete the Claim Form here.

    After Current Customers have had an opportunity to select the Credit Option, if they chose to do so, and all claims of Former Customers have been received, the following amounts will be totaled: cash payments to be made to Current and Former Customers; the value of the Credit Options selected by Current Customers; the costs of notice and administration; and the amount the Court authorizes for attorneys’ fees and expenses and services awards to the Class Representatives. If this total is less than $52 million but more than $38 million, the amount remaining in the Settlement Fund after all obligations are paid will be returned to Mercury. If the total is less than $38 million, the difference between the total and $38 million will be distributed, pro rata, to Current Customers and to those Former Customers who timely submit a valid claim, and then the amount remaining in the Settlement Fund after this distribution will be returned to Mercury. This additional payment may be made at the same time as the other cash payments described above.

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  8. How much will my payment be?

    Current Customers who do not select the Credit Option and Former Customers who file a valid and timely claim will receive a cash payment calculated in the same way. A portion of the net Settlement Fund will be divided equally among all Class Members. The remaining portion will be divided based upon a formula using the number of transactions and dollar volume of transactions processed by each Class Member. You can find out more detail about the formula by reading the Settlement Agreement here. In addition, as described in the answer to the previous question, Current Customers and Former Customers who file a timely and valid claim may receive an additional amount depending on the number of Former Customers who file claims.

    The estimated amount of the cash payment you are eligible to receive is shown on the email or postcard that was sent to you about the Settlement. You can also find out the amount by calling the Settlement Administrator at 1-888-733-0353. The actual amount will not be calculated until all the necessary information is available, such as the number of Current Customers who select the Cash Option, the value of the valid claims made by Former Customers, and the amounts awarded by the Court for attorneys’ fees and expenses. It is not expected that the actual amount you receive will differ substantially from the estimated amount.

    Current Customers who choose the Credit Option will receive a credit equal to twice the amount of their estimated cash payment. The products and services that are available to Current Customers who select the Credit Option are described by Mercury as follows:

    • StoreCard – Consumers can use the StoreCard as a gift card or a reloadable stored-value card to earn cash back loyalty rewards on every StoreCard purchase. The Vantiv StoreCard can also be converted into a digital gift card via the Apple® Passbook® or Android M PassMarket apps, allowing consumers to pay for purchases with either their physical card or smartphones, creating mobile payment convenience. Consumers can also use their smartphones to view their StoreCard’s balances, manually or automatically reload their cards, send custom-printed gift cards to their family and friends. StoreCard is priced at $29.95 per month. For more information about StoreCard, please call 1-888-733-0353.
    • OmniShield Assure – With Vantiv’s OmniShield Assure, you can more securely accept payments and reduce your fraud liability. When used with an EMV and encryption-enabled standalone terminal or POS system, OmniShield Assure helps protect your business from counterfeit or fraudulent cards, not to mention safely transmit card data for processing. OmniShield Assure is priced at $24.95 per month. For more information about OmniShield Assure, please call 1-888-733-0353.
    • Fast Access Funding – Fast Access Funding gives you the ability to receive accelerated funding of your transactions. You can get your money in as soon as five hours after you close your batch. Fast Access Funding is priced at 50-100 basis points per dollar of accelerated funding. For more information about Fast Access Funding, please call 1-888-733-0353.
    • Vantiv BizShield – Vantiv BizShield is a “command center,” giving real-time snapshots about your business. With Vantiv BizShield, we will keep an eye on your business’s reviews, web listings, competitors, sales performance, and customer trends, and we will alert you when we spot something you should know about it. Bizshield is priced at $14.99 per month. For more information about Vantiv BizShield, please call 1-888-733-0353.
    • Vantiv Insights – Vantiv Insights is a “command center,” giving real-time snapshots about your business, the local market, and customer behavior. Vantiv Insights provides you with unique, business-impacting payments data, payment card indicators and buyer attributes, and detailed, high-level graphical reports based on customer-specific data. Vantiv Insights is priced at $29.99 per month. For more information about Vantiv Insights, please call 1-888-733-0353.

    Neither the Court nor Class Counsel has endorsed or expressed an opinion about the value or benefits of these products and services.

    For more information, please contact your Mercury Payment Systems account representative. You may also visit the following websites:

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  9. If I Already Subscribe To A Product Or Service That Is Listed As A Credit Option, Can I Select That Same Product Or Service As A Credit Option And Receive A Credit Towards The Product Or Service I Already Use?

    You cannot select a Credit Option of a service or product that you already subscribe to or receive. If you do, you will automatically receive the cash payment instead.

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  10. Do Merchants Who Select A Product Or Service As A Credit Option Need To Cancel Their Subscription Once The Credit Expires Or Will It Automatically?

    If you select the Credit Option, the product or service you select will continue unless and until you cancel it by contacting your Mercury Payment Systems representative and telling them to cancel the product or service. You will continue to be charged the cost of the product or service until you terminate it, even if the credit has run out. At the beginning of the credit period, Mercury will inform merchants who select a Credit Option that they will need to cancel the service if or when they decide they do not want it anymore.

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  11. How can I receive monetary compensation?

    Current Customers will automatically receive a cash payment via electronic funds transfer unless they select the Credit Option on or before October 13, 2017. It is not necessary for Current Customers to file a claim.

    Former Customers must submit a valid and timely Claim Form to qualify for a payment. The Claim Form asks Former Customers to attest that they are in the Class and to provide their current contact information. If you received a Notice by postcard, the Claim Form is attached and you can return it by mail to the return address pre-printed on the back of the Claim Form. You may also download a copy here. Please note, the postage is pre-paid so you do not need a stamp. You can also fill out the Claim Form here.

    Former Customers must submit their claim online or mail it postmarked no later than October 13, 2017. Late claims will not be accepted.

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  12. When would I receive my monetary compensation?

    The Court will hold a hearing on August 29, 2017 to decide whether to approve the Settlement. If the Court approves the Settlement, there may be appeals, which could take more than a year to resolve. Cash payments to Class Members will be made after the Settlement is finally approved and any appeals or other required proceedings have been completed. Current Customers who choose the Credit Option will receive their credit at or about the same time. You may visit this website for updates on the progress of the Settlement. Please be patient.

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  13. What am I giving up to stay in the Settlement Class and get monetary compensation?

    Unless you exclude yourself from the Settlement, you cannot sue Defendants or be part of any other lawsuit against Defendants about the issues this Settlement resolves. You will also be bound by all of the Court’s decisions and the release contained in the Settlement. The specific claims you will be giving up against Defendants are described in Section XII of the Settlement Agreement. Read it carefully. The Settlement Agreement is available here.

    If you have any questions, you can talk to the lawyers representing the Class, who are called “Class Counsel.” Their names are listed in FAQ 17. You will not be charged to talk to Class Counsel. Or, you can, of course, talk to your own lawyer at your own expense if you have questions about what this means.

    If you want to keep your rights to sue (or continue to sue) Defendants based on the claims this Settlement resolves, you must take steps to exclude yourself from the Settlement Class (see FAQs 14-16).

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  14. How do I exclude myself from the Settlement?

    To exclude yourself from the Settlement, or “opt out,” you must send a letter by U.S. Mail that includes:

    • The name of this proceeding (Champs Sports Bar & Grill Co., et al. v. Mercury Payment Systems, LLC and Global Payments Direct, Inc.);
    • Your full name, address, and phone number;
    • The words “Request for Exclusion” at the top of the document or a statement in the body of the letter requesting exclusion from the Class; and
    • Your signature.

    You must mail your letter, postmarked no later than August 14, 2017 to:

    MPS Processing Settlement
    P.O. Box 4259
    Portland, Oregon 97208-4259

    If you ask to be excluded, you will not get any benefits under this Settlement, and you cannot object to the Settlement. You will not be legally bound by anything that happens in the lawsuit. You may be able to sue (or continue to sue) Defendants in the future. You cannot both exclude yourself from the Settlement and object to the Settlement. If you seek to exclude yourself and object, you will be deemed to have excluded yourself.

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  15. If I do not exclude myself, can I sue the defendant for the same thing later?

    No. Unless you exclude yourself from the Settlement, you give up any right to sue Defendants for the claims that this Settlement resolves. If you have a pending lawsuit, speak to your lawyer in that case immediately. You must exclude yourself from this Class to continue your own lawsuit. Remember, the exclusion deadline is August 14, 2017.

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  16. If I exclude myself, can I get monetary compensation under the Settlement?

    No. If you are a Current Customer and exclude yourself, do not select between the Cash and Credit Options because you are not eligible to receive any benefits. If you are a Former Customer and exclude yourself, do not send in a Claim Form asking for a payment.

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  17. Do I have a lawyer in this case?

    Yes. The Court appointed to represent you and other members of the Settlement Class the following lawyers: David Buckner of Buckner + Miles in Miami, Florida; Ken Canfield of Doffermyre, Shields, Canfield & Knowles, LLC in Atlanta, Georgia; Adam Levitt of DiCello, Levitt & Casey LLC in Chicago, Illinois; and Adam Webb of Webb, Klase & Lemond, LLC in Atlanta, Georgia. You will not be charged for these lawyers. If you want to be represented by your own lawyer, you may hire one at your own expense.

    You may contact Class Counsel at the following:

    Class Counsel
    David M. Buckner, Esq.
    Buckner + Miles
    3350 Mary Street
    Miami, Florida 33133
    Ken Canfield
    Doffermyre Shields
    Canfield & Knowles LLC
    1355 Peachtree Street
    Suite 1900
    Atlanta, Georgia 30309-3238
    Adam J. Levitt
    DiCello Levitt & Casey LLC
    Ten North Dearborn Street
    Eleventh Floor
    Chicago, Illinois 60602
    E. Adam Webb
    Webb, Klase & Lemond, LLC
    1900 The Exchange, S.E.,
    Suite 480
    Atlanta, Georgia 30339

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  18. How will Class Counsel and the Class Representative be paid?

    You will not be asked to pay any of the lawyers’ fees or expenses. The lawyers representing the Class, who have not yet received any payment for their time or the expenses they have incurred, intend to ask the Court to pay them up to one-third of the Settlement Fund to compensate them for their time and the financial risk that they took when they agreed to represent the Plaintiffs and get paid only if the lawsuit is successful. In addition, the lawyers intend to ask the Court to reimburse them for all of the expenses they have incurred up to $175,000. The Court will determine the amount the lawyers will receive at the Final Approval Hearing on August 29, 2017. Defendants have agreed not to object to this request provided the Court authorizes the lawyers to get no more than one-third of the Settlement fund.

    The Settlement Class is represented by the four merchants who brought the case: Champs Sports Bar & Grill (a restaurant in Ohio), Sam Malouf (a retail clothing store in California), Archer’s Barbeque (a restaurant group in Tennessee), and Wokchow Development (a restaurant in Tennessee). In addition to the benefits the Class Representatives will receive as members of the Settlement Class, Class Counsel intend to ask the Court to pay Service Awards of up to $20,000 to each of the four merchants to compensate them for the efforts and risk they took on behalf of the Class. Among those risks was the possibility they might have to pay Defendants’ attorneys’ fees and expenses even if the merchants won the case, as Defendants’ contracts purportedly require that they do. Defendants have agreed not to oppose the request. The Service Awards approved by the Court will be paid from the Settlement Fund. The Court will determine the amount of the Service Awards at the Final Approval Hearing on August 29, 2017.

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  19. How do I tell the Court I do not like the Settlement?

    If you are a Settlement Class Member, you can object to the Settlement if you do not think it is fair, reasonable, or adequate. You can give reasons why you think the Court should not approve it. The Court will consider your views. If you object to the Settlement and seek to exclude yourself, you will be deemed to have excluded yourself and your objection will not be considered.

    To object, you must do so in writing and serve the objection on the Court, Class Counsel, and the lawyers for Defendants at the addresses set forth below. Your objection must include:

    • The name of this proceeding (Champs Sports Bar & Grill Co., et al. v. Mercury Payment Systems, LLC and Global Payments Direct, Inc., Case No. 1:16-CV-00012-MHC);
    • Your full name, address, and phone number;
    • A written statement of your objections, as well as the specific reason for each objection, and any legal or factual support you wish to bring to the Court’s attention;
    • Any evidence or other information you wish to introduce in support of your objections;
    • A statement of whether you or your counsel intends to appear and argue at the Final Approval Hearing;
    • Evidence or other information showing that you are a member of the Settlement Class;
    • Four dates before the Final Approval Hearing when you will be available to be deposed by the lawyers for the Parties; and
    • All other information specified in the Preliminary Approval Order (available on this website here).

    If you hire a lawyer to represent you in preparing a written objection or appearing at the Final Approval Hearing, your lawyer must provide additional information as specified in the Preliminary Approval Order.

    File your objection electronically with the Court or mail the objection to these places, postmarked no later than August 14, 2017:

    Clerk of Court Class Counsel Defendants' Counsel
    Clerk of the Court
    USDC, Northern District of Georgia
    Richard B. Russell Federal Building
    2211 United States Courthouse
    75 Ted Turner Drive, SW
    Atlanta, GA 30303-3309
    www.gand.uscourts.gov
    David M. Buckner, Esq.
    Buckner + Miles
    3350 Mary Street
    Miami, Florida 33133

    Ken Canfield
    Doffermyre Shields
    Canfield & Knowles LLC
    1355 Peachtree Street
    Suite 1900
    Atlanta, Georgia 30309-3238

    Adam J. Levitt
    DiCello Levitt & Casey LLC
    Ten North Dearborn Street
    Eleventh Floor
    Chicago, Illinois 60602

    E. Adam Webb
    Webb, Klase & Lemond, LLC
    1900 The Exchange, S.E.
    Suite 480
    Atlanta, Georgia 30339
    David D. Pope
    Benesch, Friedlander, Coplan & Aronoff LLP
    333 West Wacker Drive
    Suite 1900
    Chicago, Illinois 60606

    Gregory J. Phillips
    Benesch, Friedlander, Coplan & Aronoff LLP
    200 Public Square
    Suite 2300
    Cleveland, OH 44114-2378
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  20. What is the difference between objecting and excluding myself?

    Objecting is simply telling the Court that you don’t like something about the Settlement. You can object to the benefits provided by the Settlement or other terms of the Settlement only if you stay in the Settlement Class. Excluding yourself, or "opting out," is telling the Court that you don’t want to be included in the Settlement. If you exclude yourself, you have no basis to object to the Settlement because the Settlement no longer affects you.

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  21. When and where will the Court decide whether to approve the Settlement?

    The Court will hold a Final Approval Hearing on August 29, 2017, at 9:30 a.m. in Courtroom 1905 before Judge Mark H. Cohen of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, located at 1921 Richard B. Russell Federal Building and United States Courthouse, 75 Ted Turner Drive, SW, Atlanta, GA 30303-3309. This hearing date and time may be moved. Please check this website for notice of any changes.

    At the Final Approval Hearing, the Court will consider whether the Settlement is fair, reasonable, and adequate; how much Class Counsel will receive for fees and expenses; whether to approve Service Awards to the Class Representatives; and any other appropriate matters. If there are objections, the Court also will consider them. The Court will listen to people at the hearing who file in advance a timely notice of their intention to appear (see FAQ 19). At or after the Final Approval Hearing, the Court will decide whether to approve the Settlement. There is no deadline by which the Court must make its decision.

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  22. Do I have to come to the Hearing?

    No. Class Counsel will answer questions the Court may have. You are welcome, however, to come at your own expense. If you submit a written objection, you do not have to come to the Court to talk about it. As long as you submitted your written objection on time, the Court will consider it. You may also pay your own lawyer to attend, but it is not necessary. If you or your own lawyer wants to speak at the hearing, you must file a notice of intention to appear and provide the other information required by the Preliminary Approval Order.

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  23. What happens if I do nothing at all?

    If you are a Settlement Class Member and do nothing, you will remain a part of the Settlement Class and will not be able to sue Defendants about the claims being resolved through the Settlement. If you are a Current Customer, you will automatically receive the cash payment to which you are entitled. If you are a Former Customer, you will receive nothing unless you file a claim.

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  24. Are there more details about the Settlement?

    More details are in the Settlement Agreement itself. You can get a copy of the Settlement Agreement on this website here, from the Settlement Administrator by calling toll-free 1-888-733-0353, or by writing to MPS Processing Settlement, P.O. Box 4259, Portland, Oregon 97208-4259. The status of the Settlement will be posted on this website.

    Please do not contact the Court with questions about the Settlement.

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Important Dates

  • October 9, 2009-May 16, 2017
    Class Period
  • August 14, 2017
    Deadline to Exclude yourself from the Settlement
  • August 14, 2017
    Deadline to Object to the Settlement
  • October 13, 2017
    Online Claim Filing Deadline
  • October 13, 2017
    Postmarked Deadline for Claim Filing Deadline
  • August 29, 2017 9:30 a.m. EST
    Final Approval Hearing